Everything you need to know about Apple Pay in the UK

Apple Pay Here

So today (14/07/15) saw the launch of Apple Pay in the UK.. But what is it, and why should I care I hear you say.. Well – hopefully the post below will help you get the most from Apple Pay, and answer any questions you may have.

What is Apple Pay?

Apple Pay is Apples attempt at getting you to leave your wallet at home, or at least your bank cards! Ever since the inception of the Apple Wallet (aka Passbook) companies have offered up ‘membership/club’ cards as ‘Passbook’ items, to save you having to carry extra cards round with you. Apple have worked hard to take that one step further, and have worked with some pretty influential organisations to introduce Apple Pay. Which allows you to store your bank card details in the secure enclave on your Apple iDevice, then using NFC (Near Field Communications) and Apple’s Touch ID you can use your phone to securely pay for items or services at supported pay points.

Sounds cool doesn’t it? But wait.. Also a little daunting? Well no need to panic just yet, check out my definitive and always up to date post below to find out all there is to know!

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Launch Apps from iOS Notification Centre using LaunchCode

Intelligent Apps Releases LaunchCode Shortcut With Notification Center

Intelligent Apps Releases LaunchCode Shortcut With Notification Center

If you love your iPhone and your Apps so much so that your iPhones pages are crammed full with many apps, you’ll know how painful it can be searching all those icons for that app you’re after. Sure you can use Spotlight to quickly search and launch your app, but if it’s a collection of apps you launch all the time check out LaunchCode.

Using LaunchCode you can launch Apps from iOS Notification Centre, or by drawing predefined custom symbols inside the launch pad of the app.

The ultimate goal of LaunchCode Shortcut Center is for users to use their iPhone as an extension of themselves and not as the focal point of their attention. They will be able to complete tasks, call contacts, listen to their favorite radio station, and even open Maps with directions to their home all without looking at their phone. Muscle memory will take over. All that is required is for one to draw their symbol on the screen and the phone will obey their command.

With the ease of this user interface, this is the only app iPhone users will ever need in their iPhone dock. Unlike other productivity apps, LaunchCode injects the human interface into the iPhone. Humans communicate nonverbally in ways such as with gestures, letters and symbols, and now can communicate with an iPhone the same way.

Intelligent Apps plans to release two versions of LaunchCode. A free version which users can program with up to 5 app shortcuts and 5 action shortcuts and a paid version with which users can program unlimited app shortcuts and action shortcuts.

For more LaunchCode information, including more features, screenshots and videos, check out the official LaunchCode website.

Device Requirements:

  • iPhone and iPod touch
  • Requires iOS 6.0 or later
  • Size: 40 MB

Pricing and Availability:

Full version is available for £2.99 while the lite version is available for Free. Both apps are available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Productivity category.

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iOS 9 Public Beta 1 available now

iPhone ProvisionApple have just released the public beta of iOS 9 for those of you who just can’t wait until the official release. Unlike the developer beta of iOS 9, the public beta means you do not have to have an Apple developer account.. What’s more, you get the update over the air, and all future updates in the same way going forward. Signing up to the public beta program is pretty straight forward, once you’ve signed up all you have to do is download a provisioning profile on your iPhone, reboot then check for updates!

Obviously as this is a beta, is wise to try and avoid installing it on your primary hand set. Before you do so, its also wise to take a full backup of your device and it’s contents. Just incase you decide to roll back from the installation.

Once you’ve got your full backup, head over to beta.apple.com/profile on your iPhone. Once signed in with your iCloud credentials you’ll be presented with a ‘Download Profile’ button. Tap on this, accept the terms and conditions, and then follow the on screen instructions.

If you decide to roll back from iOS 9 all you need to do is connect your iPhone or iPad to your Mac or, put it in recovery mode, and restore it to the backup you made before biting the bullet… You made a backup.. Right?? If not, you can use an iPSW from iOS 8 you can grab the relevant files from http://www.ipswdownloader.com

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Buttonless Touch ID coming in 2017?

Touch ID
Image Source

Patents are being passed onto Apple from a Virginia based biometric security startup company called Privaris. Privaris are known for there handheld and keyring attached biometric scanners. Rumour has it that Apple are look at introducing a buttonless (built into screen) Touch ID Sensor in 2017.

If the rumours are true and Apple do pair up with Privaris, its fair to assume that the uses for the Touch ID sensors will expand exponentially! Especially with the impending launch of home kit, there’s suggestions that Apple will implement a door unlock feature using just Touch ID.

Although it has been corroborated that Apple have actually purchased patents from Privaris, there’s nothing to say they will actually go on to use them. As Apple have a habit of sucking up patents which never go on to be in production. The flip side being when Apple acquired AuthenTec back in 2012, who Apple rebranded as Touch ID. An quickly implemented their technology across its mobile device range.

Of course, if they do actually  manage to implement the Touch ID sensor in the screen itself, it could spell the end of the home button on the iPhone.  Rumours have been rife since as far back as 2011 suggesting Apple would drop the home button.. The up and coming release of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus (which have just gone into production) have already but it to bed for another year.

However, that in itself comes with it’s own challenges, the most obvious being a bigger reliance on phone side buttons. Which is something other manufacturers seem to prefer. Only time will tell if Apple do in fact radically change the design and layout of the iPhone. Perhaps we will even see Touch ID in its MacBook range!? Who knows..

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iPhone 6s / iPhone 7 potentially landing in August

iphone-7-xrqA recent announcement form a source (which has often proved to be correct) has suggested Apple’s latest (and greatest yet?) is scheduled to land a little earlier then expected.. KGI Securities Ming-Chi Kuo tags the iPhone 6s / iPhone 7 release date as being sometime in August, and not the original (and standard) September date.

KGI’s analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has listed 11 features he suggests we may get to see on the next iPhone revision, and also put to bed rumours of a smaller 4inch model:

  • Screen sizes are to remain at 4.7 and 5.5.
  • A new colour case will be added to the mix, the rose gold colour as featured in the recent Apple Watch Edition releases
  • The rear facing camera is likely to be capable of 12MP snaps, some other sources also suggest the camera will no longer protrude from the flat casing of the phone
  • An additional microphone will be added on the rear of the device to improve voice quality of call
  • The A9 processor will be used, along side 2GB of LPDDR4 memory
  • Several design and mechanical adjustments will be made to prevent potential repeats of ‘bend-gate’
  • Several improvements will be made to the Touch ID chip and workings to further the take-on of Apple Pay
  • Introduction of force sensitive touch screen, enabling more input methods, including handwriting, and signature support

As Ming-Chi Kuo has known to be slightly out on his launch dates in the past, I personally am remaining sceptical on this one.. However, worth reporting non the less – who knows, they may surprise us all!

 

 

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